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August 23, 2012

NYT/CBS Poll: In Ohio and Florida, Romney Holds Edge With Seniors On... Medicare

I know you're sick of Akin, but this is what steams my craw: The party was executing a brilliant and successful plan to actually win and repeal ObamaCare, and then Todd Akin decided it would be a good idea to let Democrats rule for another generation.

Anyway. This is from Media Matters' favorite Greg Sergent, so you know these words burned his dumb little fingers as he typed them.

Today’s big New York Times/CBS/Quinnipiac poll found some good news for Barack Obama: In Ohio, Wisconsin, and Florida, voters think Obama would do a better job than Mitt Romney handling Medicare by margins of eight to 10 points. Blowback against Paul Ryan?

Well, I’ve got the breakdown of these numbers among seniors, and they are far less encouraging for Obama: In two out of the three states, voters over 65 prefer Romney on Medicare, and in the third, Obama leads, but by a smaller margin. The breakdown sent over by CBS:

* In Florida, 48 percent of seniors say Romney would do a better job on Medicare, versus 44 percent who say that about Obama (the Ryan pick was supposed to be particularly problematic in this state).

* In Ohio, 49 percent of seniors say Romney would do a better job on Medicare, versus 43 percent who say that about Obama.

* In Wisconsin, 49 percent say Obama would do a better job on Medicare, versus 46 percent who say that about Romney. Close.

And yet as a general matter Obama still leads on this issue, with groups like the very young, who are, alas, quite stupid.

To spin this a little: Seniors are leading indicators on public sentiment on this issue. Why do I say that? Because they have shown over the years that they are very, very interested in the issue. Ergo, we can generally treat seniors as Informed Voters on Medicare, and we can guess that the younger cohorts are less informed, all the way down to "completely uninformed" (the young Obamabots).

Now, if they're leading indicators, this is optimistic, because it suggests that as other cohorts inform themselves over the course of the campaign, they too will come to favor Romney/Ryan over Obama/Choo-Choo Charlie on the issue.

Either way, the third rail is not electrocuting us; it's powering us. As third rails are supposed to.

People seem to forget that part of the metaphor.

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posted by Ace at 03:42 PM

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